17 August 2010

The Tory Tao of Political Pork

For members of the Reform-based Conservative Party in Newfoundland and Labrador, road paving is done in an electoral district.  Sometimes, the release refers to an “area” but the name for the area is curiously the same as the electoral district. 

Take this one for example, even if the headline makes it sound like the program in Torngat Mountains gave the money instead of got the cash.

Torngat Mountains Recreation Programs Provided $15,565

The media release will include a quote from the local representative of the Reform-based Conservative Party. In the one cited, the member turned out to be a cabinet minister.

In another release, the reference is to the Southern Shore, but the district of Ferryland covers pretty much the whole thing.  The locals would understand the two things are synonymous.  There is the obligatory thankful quote from the local Conservative Party member.

But if the cash is going to a district represented by an opposition member, any references to the district or anything that might be construed as the district get obliterated.

Take, for example, this release about money for the district of Cartwright-L'Anse au Claire.  It’s represented by Opposition Leader Yvonne Jones. Money for that district is going to the area around Pinware.

The only quote is from the transportation minister.

All government spending is partisan pork for Tories.

That is their eternal, unchanging rule.

- srbp -


Wm. Murphy said...

But if the cash is going to a district represented by an opposition member, any references to the district or anything that might be construed as the district get obliterated.

I guess we now have one of five "districts" out of the way.... This shouldn't take long!!

Wm. Murphy said...

The only quote is from the transportation minister.

I couldn't help but take notice of this doozie quote from you Ed...there you go again slinging out stuff like it is a complete departure from what has happened in the past.

So with the stink of that comment I trotted over to 1996 gov releases and checked out all of the relaeses from the DOT concerning road work funding...and what do you know...not one comment from an Opposition MHA. Only comments from the Trans Minister and the Liberal member from the cited District. Have a look at the releases for the year and try and find an Opp MHA who has been quoted in the gov release. Notta one Eddie!!!

In the Districts that were in Opp during 1996...the only reference of funding to a Tory riding was a quote by the Minister of Transportation.

And before you go on a tangent... I too agree that there should be a reference from all MHA's concerning funding in their Districts...after all it is our tax dollars. But you on the other hand have thrown this gem out like it is a new way of doing things.
Nothing could be farther from the truth

Ed Hollett said...

Murph rather than let you continue to perpetrate yet another fraud, I must first state unequivocally that I do not contend the current practice is "a complete departure" from anything.

I simply note in this post that this occurs.

You are the one who choses to misrepresent things and then pretend someone else is doing the fabricating.

That said, you may recall that your hero came to office promising a new approach.

Thank you for pointing out that he represents no change at all from his predecessor Tobin and subsequently. Oddly enough, that has been my long-standing contention. A mighty D'oh! for you.

Thanks for pointing out the continuity even as you tried to misrepresent my own comments.

Tell me something: do own goals hurt as badly as they seem to? To those of us who don't keep putting our feet in our mouths as you do, it seems quite amazing that you continue on despite having blown yourself up repeatedly.

It is a bit like watching the cartoon Coyote. Hellishly funny but after a point, a bit tiresome.

Wm. Murphy said...

I simply note in this post that this occurs.

Okay big guy...why don't you share to your readers why you even mentioned that this does occur.

I bet you have no answer as to why you feel compelled to trot out comments that you seem have no connection to things.


Ed Hollett said...

Obviously you are really embarrassed at making an ass of yourself again.

I stated my purpose and that's all there is to it.

The fact you tried to be too cute by half and made a whole other point - on top of shotting yourself in the proverbial foot - was just a bonus.

Wm. Murphy said...

Squirm, squirm...you see Ed I am not the one embarrased....on the contrary... I was dead on with my point that you had other motives when you SIMPLY NOTE something in a post without any expalnation as to why you would even mention it.

You see you threw it out there to give the impression that things are toatlly different today. you place it out their without any explanation that this is and has been, a common theme as it relates to Gov news releases.

"I stated my purpose and that's all there is to it"...you said... You did not state anything and you certainly did explain that this was common practise. Why is that Ed?
And you say that I misrepresent things...now that's funny!

Put your cape on and take on the day!

Ed Hollett said...

That sound you hear, ladies and gentlemen is the sound of Murphy reloading the shotgun to take off whatever toes he has left.

This is a simple post. In it I made an observation on funding announcements.

Nothing more.

Nothing less.

You, Murph, fabricated a motive and attributed it to me. I refuted your lame-assed imitation of John Hickey with Roger Grimes. I stated the purpose in this thread which was implicit in the original.

Perhaps you just missed it in your blind rage or in the searing pain of having whacked yourself, figuratively, in the knobs yet again with a sledge-hammer.

Now you are back again flailing around with the same foolishness.

Face it, my son. You shagged yourself up. Not only did you fail in your effort to attack me, you wound up scoring a massive hit on your own team.

Sucks to be you, evidently.

But that's neither my fault nor my problem.

Wm. Murphy said...

you wound up scoring a massive hit on your own team.

Thanks for the complement Ed.
I didn't realize I had that much influence. I guess I should be more careful...I wouldn't want it to be all about me...but apparently you think it is. I am flattered Eddie but I think you should look at others as being a bigger influence

Ursula said...


That bad back we heard so much about , well , according to Williams , he played two consecutive days of 18 hole golf .

As told to Randy Simms .

Couldn't he have used those days to prepare for the Premier's Conference .

Just asking .

Wm. Murphy said...

maybe he used the two days before the golf game to prepare for the Conference?

Ursula said...

Then again maybe he used those days to "prepare"Jerome .

Ed Hollett said...

Did he say that to Randy on air, Ursula?

Anyong said...

Wm. Murphy said..."why don't you share to your readers"

Should that read, "why don't you share WITH your readers" .... Smile!!

Ursula said...

Yup--- Simms asked about the back .

Williams said that he had played two days of 18 holes golf .

The reason Williams called Simms was to talk about online gambling and Cupids .

He said about online gambling that " he was only one vote but , as far as he was concerned [it] gambling was never going to happen .

Ursula said...

What the heck ......

Simms asked , Premier how is the back ?

Williams replied and I am paraphrasing , "that he had taken a couple of days off and that he had played two back to back days of 18 holes each day" .

They both laughed , Williams said ,you know what its like Randy .

That was Williams' answer to "how's the back premier"?

Wm. Murphy said...

Cover the Premier in bubble wrap. Yea... that's the solution.

Ursula said...

This is an excerpt from an article in The Bond Papers , Sept. 2006 :

he spoke. And rapidly drank a glass of water .

"By some accounts the premier also showed us that he is prepared to bypass his caucus and his cabinet in announcing the wage freeze".

Is the Premier prepared to do the same with online gambling ?

Ed Hollett said...

There are a few points, Ursula.

1. The Old Man called Randy because the government pollster is in the field. Everything this month for government swirls around that. Williams' comments are aimed at lining up with public opinion this month.

Never underestimate the extent to which this administration's actions are driven by polling issues.

2. Online gambling is a serious enough issue but it pales in comparison to a billion dollar electricity line deal.

Why didn't Randy ask about that?

When will any conventional reporter show the slightest interest in that issue beyond the Quebec dog whistle the Old Man blew last week?

Heck when will a provincial politician bring it up?

The answer is: they won't. In the meantime, people will talk about online gambling as if nothing else happened.

3. Online gambling would take 18 mos to 24 mos to implement. Even if cabinet approved it tomorrow (regular mtgs used to be on Thursdays) you and I would not know about it until it rolled out after the scheduled date for the next election.

This is not a government that believes in openness and transparency. They can be that way because neither the media nor politicians nor the public are concerned enough to insist they act differently.

Wm. Murphy said...

They can be that way because neither the media nor politicians nor the public are concerned enough to insist they act differently.

It appears that YOU are the only one concerned. You have the media, politicians and the public who seem not concerned....why is that you have heartburn and nobody else when it relates to your assessment of open and transparency?

Ed Hollett said...

How hysterically funny you should talk about appearances during the quarterly month of poll goosing frenzy.

Appearances can be deceiving.

Wm. Murphy said...

Ladies and gentlemem that's the sound of avoidance from a lonely man.

He just commented that neither the media nor politicians nor the public are concerned enough to insist they act differently.

Who's left Eddie?

Ursula said...

I have to give Randy credit for trying to broach the online gambling issue with Minister Marshall .

Randy ended up backpedalling and grovelling because Marshall was on the line shortly after admonshing him (Randy).

It seems that this government "lives and breaths" polling .

Does this government live by "the cost effectiveness principle"?

It is more effective to control polling , than to actually rely on "good governance" ?

Ed Hollett said...

That's a rather Steve-ish comment, Murph.

And in the same Steve-ish way, you seem to spend a lot of time on a supposedly insignficiant corner of the universe trying to persuade everyone how insignificant or wrong it is.

Yet every comment you make says something different.

Appearances can be deceiving, can't they, oh sock puppet?

Ursula said...

Murphy and Hollett ---- don't mind the rest of us , we'll just wait .